Black & White filter?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by LittleMan, Jul 9, 2005.

  1. LittleMan

    LittleMan TPF Noob!

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    I've been researching what filters I should use when photographing in B&W and haven't found much info on it...

    First, know that I will be using film and do not want to/can not use photoshop in any way. I would like to know what filter to use to turn up the contrast and keep everything in the photo interesting.

    I need to know what brand of filter is a quality brand, and what kind of filter/s I need... I looked around Adorama and there are more filters/kinds of filters there than I could ever look through in a life time... so I need to know what's good and what's bad.

    Also, is there any price range that I should be looking at?
    Like...
    $10-$30 is crap...
    $35-$65 is pretty good...
    etc....
    Is it that way for Filters?

    There are a lot of questions I have.... so I'll just stop now and get some of these answered.
    Thanks!
     
  2. MDowdey

    MDowdey Guest

    i dont really know about brands too much other than tiffen(always worked for me) but you cant go wrong with a set of filters such as :

    yellow
    red
    orange

    each will up the contrast in their own way, red being the strongest.
     
  3. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

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    Depends on the quality you're looking for. I'm shopping around for BW filters now too and I don't know if I should get the top of the line filters or not. The price difference is huge.

    On BH, a kit of 3 Tiffen filters costs 30 bucks. I'm pretty sure they're not multicoated at all.

    On the other hand, a good B-W filter with coating is about 25-30 bucks alone.
     
  4. thebeginning

    thebeginning TPF Noob!

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    yeah, as in the B+W brand. (i think it's B+W, not B-W.) that's a great brand for filters, but their stuff is expensive. as long as you dont shoot into the sun much, you can just buy a tiffen one. I'm thinking about buying a red filter.
     
  5. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    Whether or not a photo is interesting doesn't have much to do with filters.

    In general a red #25 increases contrast, but what you really need to look at is the color of the important subject matter and a color wheel (for light, not pigment). A red filter won't increase contrast in a scene of pink marbles on a red cloth, or green marbles on a green cloth, but it would increase contrast in a scene of red on green, or the other way around. A colored filter lets light that is the same color through as normal, while blocking colors from the other side of the color wheel.

    A red filter blocks a lot of green and cyan, so photogs use them to increase contrast between bright flowers and green foliage or clouds and blue sky, etc... A red filter used with a portrait can make reddish freckles disappear, along with their lips. A green filter would emphasize freckles and lips, and possibly darken a ruddy complexion.

    Just go with a well known brand that you can afford.
     
  6. thebeginning

    thebeginning TPF Noob!

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    very nice explanation^
     
  7. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

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    :mrgreen:

    I was shooting a girl after a swim in the pool.

    What I found out, is that a red filter makes the green-blue veins really contrasty. It also removes the lips. So when I saw the print in the developer, I got chills.

    She looked like a drowner. :meh:
     
  8. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

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    When I was taking photo classes in college I noticed that all the goth girls really loved their #25 red filters. A little higher contrast, a little extra zombie-ification... :lol:

    I see the word "swarthy" often mentioned in articles/books in reference to how green filters affect caucasian skin tones. It always cracks me up for some reason. I just can't see telling a client that the reason I'm photographing him with a green filter is to make him look swarthy.
     
  9. LittleMan

    LittleMan TPF Noob!

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    wow! thanks ksmattfish!
    I now understand(basicly) how/why it all works! lol
    right now I don't have the money for any filters... so I'll be getting some in the near future!

    Thanks again for all your help everyone! :thumbup:

    ~Chris
     
  10. paul rond

    paul rond TPF Noob!

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